Museum curators are responsible for managing
collections of objects of artistic, scientific, historical and
general interest. In a large museum they might be
involved in one specialism, while in a small general
museum they have broader responsibilities. The main
part of the role is to acquire objects, and to research,
identify, and catalogue them, usually on computer.
Curators are also responsible for ensuring correct
Providing information is an important part of the job. This can include organising displays, writing descriptions of objects, answering visitors’ questions and giving talks to local groups or school parties. As museums are part of the leisure industry, information combines entertainment and education and must bepresented in an appealing and accessible way. Attracting visitors is crucial to the work.
Other duties include looking after staff issues, security and insurance, and deciding on policy.
Museum curators usually work 36 to 37 hours a week on
a rota, probably including some weekends. Part-time
hours may be available.
The environment depends on the type of museum and how busy it is, but the work is usually indoors.There may be some lifting and carrying involved, moving crates and boxes of exhibits. A driving licence is often necessary.
To be a museum curator you should have:
Employers include national museums funded by the
government, regional and local museums funded by local
authorities, university museums, and independent and
specialist museums.You may need to move around the
country to gain experience and progress, especially if
working in a smaller museum with fewer opportunities
There may also be opportunities to work overseas.
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